James Lockhart (born April 8, 1933 - January 17, 2014)was a U.S. historian of colonial Latin America, especially the Nahua people and Nahuatl language.
Born in Huntington, West Virginia, Lockhart attended West Virginia University (BA, 1956) and the University of Wisconsin–Madison (MA, 1962; PhD, 1967).Late in life, Lockhart wrote a short, candid memoir. He joined the US Army and was posted to Germany, working in "a low-level intelligence agency," translating letters from East Germany. Returning to the US, he entered the graduate program at University of Wisconsin, where he pursued his in the social history of conquest-era Peru.
His dissertation, published in 1968 as Spanish Peru, 1531-1560 was a path breaking approach to this early period. Less interested in the complicated political events of the era, he focused on the formation of Spanish colonial society in the midst of Spanish war with the indigenous and internecine struggles between factions of conquerors. With separate chapters on different social groups, including Africans and indigenous brought into the Spanish sphere, and an important chapter on women of the conquest era, his work shifted the understanding of that era. His main source for the people and processes of this early period were notarial documents, often property transfers and other types of legal agreements, which gave insight into the formation and function of Spanish colonial society. The work is now a classic and was published in a second, revised edition in 1994.
While researching Spanish Peru, he compiled information on the Spaniards who received a share of the ransom of the Inca Atahualpa, extracted at Cajamarca. The Men of Cajamarca has both individual biographies of those who shared in the treasure, as well as a thorough analysis of the general social patterns of those conquerors. Both Spanish Peru and The Men of Cajamarca have been published in Spanish translation.
He began to do research on colonial Mexico while at University of Texas, looking both at the socioeconomic patterns there and began learning Nahuatl. Fruits of these new interests were the publication of the anthology Provinces of Early Mexico: Variants of Spanish American Regional Evolution (edited with Ida Altman) and Nahuatl in the Middle Years: Language Contact Phenomena in Texts of the Colonial Period (with linguist Frances Karttunen).
He moved to University of California, Los Angeles, where he spent the bulk of his teaching career 1972-1994, retiring early and continuing to collaborate with colleagues on research projects and mentor graduate students working on historical sources in the Nahuatl language and the colonial-era Nahua people.
Among his many graduate students in colonial Spanish American social history and the philology of Mesoamerican indigenous languages, who earned doctorates under his mentorship are S.L.(Sarah) Cline, Kimberly Gauderman, Robert Haskett, Rebecca Horn, John E. Kicza, Leslie K. Lewis, Doris Namala, Leslie Offutt, Matthew Restall, Susan Schroeder, Lisa Sousa, Kevin Terraciano, John Tutino, John Super, and Stephanie Wood.
He was a major contributor to a field of ethnohistory built on the study of indigenous-language sources from colonial Mexico, which he called New Philology. He collaborated with colonial Brazilianist Stuart B. Schwartz in writing Early Spanish America (1983), which is a foundational text for graduate students studying colonial Latin America. He was the series editor for the Nahuatl Studies Series, initially based at the UCLA Latin American Center and then jointly with Stanford University Press. Lockhart was honored by the Conference on Latin American History Distinguished Service Award in 2004.
He died on 17 January 2014 at the age of 80.
Marina[maˈɾina] or Malintzin[maˈlintsin], more popularly known as La Malinche[la maˈlintʃe], was a Nahua woman from the Mexican Gulf Coast, who played a key role in the Spanish conquest of the Aztec Empire, acting as an interpreter, advisor, and intermediary for the Spanish conquistador, Hernán Cortés. She was one of 20 women slaves given to the Spaniards by the natives of Tabasco in 1519. Later, she gave birth to Cortés's first son, Martín, who is considered one of the first Mestizos.
The Nahuas are a group of indigenous people of Mexico and El Salvador, historically also present in parts of Guatemala, Honduras, and Nicaragua. The Nahuas comprise the largest indigenous group in Mexico and second largest group in El Salvador. The Aztec and Toltec cultures were of Nahua ethnicity.
Classical Nahuatl is any of the variants of Nahuatl, spoken in the Valley of Mexico and central Mexico as a lingua franca at the time of the 16th-century Spanish conquest of the Aztec Empire. During the subsequent centuries, it was largely displaced by Spanish and evolved into some of the modern Nahuan languages in use today. Although classified as an extinct language, Classical Nahuatl has survived through a multitude of written sources transcribed by Nahua peoples and Spaniards in the Latin script.
The Anales de Tlatelolco is a codex manuscript written in Nahuatl, using Latin characters, by anonymous Aztec authors. The text has no pictorial content. Although there is an assertion that the text was a copy of one written in 1528 in Tlatelolco, only seven years after the fall of the Aztec Empire, James Lockhart argues that there is no evidence for this early date of composition, based on internal evidence of the text. However, he supports the contention that this is an authentic conquest account, arguing that it was composed about 20 years after the conquest in the 1540s, and contemporaneous with the Cuernavaca censuses. Unlike the Florentine Codex and its account of the conquest of Mexico, the Annals of Tlatelolco remained in indigenous hands, providing authentic insight into the thoughts and outlook of the newly conquered Nahuas.
Aztec codices are books written by pre-Columbian and colonial-era Nahuas in pictorial and/or alphabetic form. These codices provide some of the best primary sources for Aztec culture. The pre-Columbian codices mostly do not in fact use the codex form and are, or originally were, long folded sheets. These sheets were typically made from stretched deerskin or from the fibers of the agave plant. They also differ from European books in that they mostly consist of images and pictograms; they were not meant to symbolize spoken or written narratives.
The traditions of indigenous Mesoamerican literature extend back to the oldest-attested forms of early writing in the Mesoamerican region, which date from around the mid-1st millennium BCE. Many of the pre-Columbian cultures of Mesoamerica are known to have been literate societies, who produced a number of Mesoamerican writing systems of varying degrees of complexity and completeness. Mesoamerican writing systems arose independently from other writing systems in the world, and their development represents one of the very few such origins in the history of writing. The conquistadors brought their distinctive cultural creations, in the form of books, from Europe to the New World which further influenced native literature.
Don Luis de Santa María Nanacacipactzin was the last tlatoani ("king") of the Nahua altepetl of Tenochtitlan, as well as its governor (gobernador) under the colonial Spanish system of government. The previous ruler Cristóbal de Guzmán Cecetzin having died in 1562, Nanacacipactzin was installed on September 30, 1563, and ruled until his death on December 27, 1565.
Alonso de Molina was a Franciscan priest and grammarian, who wrote a well-known dictionary of the Nahuatl language published in 1571 and still used by scholars working on Nahuatl texts in the tradition of the New Philology. He also wrote a bilingual confessional manual for priests who served in Nahuatl-speaking communities.
Arthur James Outram Anderson was an American anthropologist specializing in Aztec culture and translator of the Nahuatl language.
Antonio Valeriano was a colonial Mexican, Nahua scholar and politician. He was a collaborator with fray Bernardino de Sahagún in the creation of the twelve-volume General History of the Things of New Spain, the Florentine Codex, He served as judge-governor of both his home, Azcapotzalco, and of Tenochtitlan, in Spanish colonial New Spain.
The Cantares Mexicanos is the name given to a manuscript collection of Nahuatl songs or poems recorded in the 16th century. The 91 songs of the Cantares form the largest Nahuatl song collection, containing over half of all known traditional Nahuatl songs. It is currently located in the National Library of Mexico in Mexico City. A description is found in the census of prose manuscripts in the native tradition in the Handbook of Middle American Indians.
New Philology generally refers to a branch of Mexican ethnohistory and philology that uses colonial-era native language texts written by Indians to construct history from the indigenous point of view. The name New Philology was coined by James Lockhart to describe work that he and his doctoral students and scholarly collaborators in history, anthropology, and linguistics had pursued since the mid-1970s. Lockhart published a great many essays elaborating on the concept and content of the New Philology and Matthew Restall published a description of it in the Latin American Research Review. The techniques of the New Philology have also been applied in other disciplines such as European medieval studies.
Matthew Restall is a historian of Colonial Latin America. He is an ethnohistorian and a scholar of conquest, colonization, and the African diaspora in the Americas. He is currently Edwin Erle Sparks Professor of Latin American History and Anthropology, and Director of Latin American Studies, at the Pennsylvania State University. He is President of the American Society for Ethnohistory, a former editor of Ethnohistory journal, a senior editor of the Hispanic American Historical Review, editor of the book series Latin American Originals, and co-editor of the Cambridge Latin American Studies book series.
Francisco Jiménez was a colonial Nahua noble from Tecamachalco. He served as judge-governor of Tenochtitlan for a year and five months in 1568 and 1569, and was the first outsider to govern Tenochtitlan. Despite being a noble, the use of the honorific don with his name is inconsistent.
Charles Gibson was an American ethnohistorian who wrote foundational works on the Nahua peoples of colonial Mexico and was elected President of the American Historical Association in 1977.
Lisa Sousa is an American academic historian active in the field of Latin American studies. A specialist in the colonial-era history of Latin America and of Colonial Mexico in particular, Sousa is noted for her research, commentary, and translations of colonial Mesoamerican literature and Nahuatl-language historical texts. She has also published research on historical and contemporary indigenous peoples in Mexico, the roles of women in indigenous societies and cultural definitions of gender. Sousa is a Full Professor in the History Department at Occidental College in Los Angeles, California.
Frances Esther Karttunen, also known as Frances Ruley Karttunen, is an American academic linguist, historian and author. She received her BA in 1964 from Harvard and her PhD in 1970 from Indiana University. In her linguistics career Karttunen has specialised in the study of Mesoamerican languages such as Mayan but in particular Nahuatl, on which topic she has authored seven books and numerous academic papers. She has also written about endangered languages, linguistic diversity and language translation. Early in her career Karttunen also produced several studies of Finnish phonology and syntax.
Nahuatl, is a language or group of languages of the Uto-Aztecan language family. Varieties of Nahuatl are spoken by about 1.7 million Nahua peoples, most of whom live in central Mexico.
The historiography of Spanish America has a long history. It dates back to the early sixteenth century with multiple competing accounts of the conquest, Spaniards’ eighteenth-century attempts to discover how to reverse the decline of its empire, and Latin American-born Spaniards' (creoles') search for an identity other than Spanish, and the creation of creole patriotism. Following independence in some parts of Spanish America, some politically-engaged citizens of the new sovereign nations sought to shape national identity. In the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, non-Spanish American historians began writing chronicles important events, such as the conquests of Mexico and Peru, dispassionate histories of the Spanish imperial project after its almost complete demise in the hemisphere, and histories of the southwest borderlands, areas of the United States that had previously been part of the Spanish Empire, led by Herbert Eugene Bolton. At the turn of the twentieth century, scholarly research on Spanish America saw the creation of college courses dealing with the region, the systematic training of professional historians in the field, and the founding of the first specialized journal, Hispanic American Historical Review. For most of the twentieth century, historians of colonial Spanish America read and were familiar with a large canon of work. With the expansion of the field in the late twentieth century, there has been the establishment of new subfields, the founding of new journals, and the proliferation of monographs, anthologies, and articles for increasingly specialized practitioners and readerships. The Conference on Latin American History, the organization of Latin American historians affiliated with the American Historical Association, awards a number of prizes for publications, with works on early Latin American history well represented.
Susan Schroeder is an American historian, specializing in the ethnohistory of Aztec people of Mexico and in the translation of colonial documents written in Nahuatl - especially the chronicles of Chimalpahin. She received her PhD in 1984 from UCLA where she studied Nahuatl and Latin American Colonial History with James Lockhart. She is professor emerita at Tulane University, where she taught from 1999 to 2009, after teaching at Loyola University at Chicago from 1985 to 1999. She received the lifetime achievement award of the American Society for Ethnohistory in 2017.